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Third Charter School Sought in Livermore - The Independent

Third Charter School Sought in Livermore - The Independent

Third Charter School Sought in Livermore - The

VOLUME XLVIII, NUMBER 41Your Local News Source Since 1963 SERVING LIVERMORE • PLEASANTON • SUNOL THURSDAY, OCTOBER 13, 2011Third Charter School Sought in LivermoreFind Out What'sHappeningCheck out thesecond sectionSection II is filled with informationabout arts, entertainmentand special events. There areeducation stories, a variety offeatures, and the arts and entertainmentand bulletin board listLARPD GoesGreen at ParksLivermore Area Recreationand Park District now has threeplaygrounds that feature recycledtire rubber surfacing. Playgroundsat Karl Wente Park, BothwellPark, and Robertson Park havethe new surfacing, helping tomake them more environmentallyfriendly by keeping over 5,000tires out of the waste stream.The new surfaces have beenreceived favorably by the publicfor aesthetics, greatly improvedaccessibility, and enhanced safety.The surfacing at Bothwell Parkand Robertson Park were paidin part by a grant received fromthe Tire-Derived Product GrantProgram from CalRecycle.LARPD anticipates usingthe same rubberized surfacingfor the planned playgroundat Cayetano Park. For moreinformation, visit the websitewww.larpd.dst.ca.us or call 925-373-5700.Voter RegistrationDeadline Is Oct. 24The deadline to register tovote for the November 8, 2011Consolidated District Election isMonday, October 24, 2011.Alameda County residentsmust be citizens, 18 years oldand not in prison or on parolefor the conviction of a felonyto be eligible to register to vote.V oter registration affidavits areavailable at the Registrar of Votersoffice and at libraries, firestations and post offices. Theymay also be downloaded. Theregistration form can be found atwww.acgov.org.Completed affidavits must bedelivered to the Registrar of Votersoffice at 1225 Fallon Street,Room G-1, Oakland, CA 94612or postmarked by October 24th inorder to be valid for the upcomingelection.Voters can call the Registrar ofVoters office at (510) 272-6973or (510) 267-8683 or visit thewebsite at www.acgov.org/rov tocheck voter registration status.New Law Aimedat ProtectingChildren in CarsNew legislation has beensigned into law in California regardingthe protection of childrenin vehicles.On Tuesday, October 4, 2011,Governor Brown signed into lawSenate Bill 929 that will requirethat a child riding in any vehiclemust be restrained in the backseat in a child restraint until(See LAW, page 5)EBRPD Information inToday's IndependentLook for the East Bay RegionalPark District’s insert intoday’s Independent.Included in the insert are activitiesand events planned for thecoming months in area parks.EBRPD includes 65 parkswith over 1,200 miles of trailsfor hiking, biking, horsebackriding and nature study. The ParkDistrict offers lakes, shorelines,campgrounds, visitor centers,interpretive and recreation programs,picnic areas, indoor/outdoorrental facilities, golf coursesand much more. http://www.ebparks.orgBy Patricia KoningBy next Monday, the Tri-Valley Learning Corporation(TVLC) [which oversees theLivermore Valley Charter School(LVCS) and the Livermore ValleyCharter Preparatory high school(LVCP)] plans to submit to theLivermore Valley Joint UnifiedSchool District (LVJUSD) apetition for a new K-8 charterschool.Named Portola Academy,the proposed school would belocated at the former PortolaElementary School site, currenthome of LVCP. The new charterPhoto - Doug JorgensenSaturday was ArtWalk day in downtown Livermore. A variety of art was on display. In addition,there was entertainment and an opportunity for hands-on activities.“It has been a very successfultwo years.”That was the message deliveredby Livermore City ManagerLinda Barton regarding efforts tomeet goals set by the council in2010. “The results show a greatpartnership between staff, thecouncil and the community.”Her report took place duringthe regular city council meetingon Monday. The report is onepresented every year. Successesincluded an upturn in constructionactivity, a better job outlook,successes in transportation andopen space preservation.The were six categories, eachcontaining a variety of goals.The top category focused onmaking the city more businessfriendly and generating jobs.Art & Entertainment....... Section IIBulletin Board............... Section IIClassifieds...........................10Editorial.................................4Mailbox...................................4Insideschool would serve 560 studentsin transitional kindergartenthrough eighth grade. TVLCChief Operating Officer BillBatchelor stated that LVCS andLVCP will transition to the newcampus on the corner of ConstitutionDrive and North CanyonsParkway in time to house PortolaAcademy at the Portola Avenuesite in 2012.One goal of the school, saidBatchelor, is to serve as an alternativeneighborhood school for thePortola community. If demandexceeds the number of availablespaces for students, enrollmentLivermore Council Has HadA 'Successful Two Years'More business friendly policiesincluded implementing asimplified hazard materials permittingprocess, expanding typesof businesses allowed along thefreeway corridor, and reducingtraffic impact fees and the cost ofconditional use permits for newhigh wage, innovative technologybusinesses. Other policiesincluded reducing traffic impactfees for existing businesses relocatingwithin the city; reducingthe cost of transfer of developmentcredits for new housing by50 percent, a savings of $21,000per home; reducing the inclusionaryhousing in-lieu fee fornew housing by 33 percent, asavings of $8,000 per home; andextending the city’s fee defer-(See COUNCIL, page 4)Roundup..................................3Short Notes.............................12Sports......................................6Obituaries................................9preference will be given to familiesliving within the geographicboundaries of the former PortolaElementary School and JunctionAvenue Middle School, thecurrent boundaries of JunctionAvenue K-8. The boundary wouldbe within a one-mile radius of thePortola Avenue site.“We feel there is a need in thiscommunity that we can meet,”explained Batchelor. “The TVLCboard and everyone involved arevery excited to be submittingthis petition. This is a project wehave been working on for severalyears.” He notes that LVCS currentlyhas nearly 800 students onits waiting list.Portola Academy, which isexpected to serve a diverse Title1 population, will be modeled inlarge part after LVCS, but tailoredto meet the needs of the studentpopulation. “We won’t reallyknow what our population willlook like until we open enrollment,”said Batchelor. “Our hopeis to attract a lot of the neighborsof the Portola school site.”Portola Academy will targetclass sizes of 20:1 in transitionalkindergarten through third gradeand no more than 26:1 in gradesPhoto - Doug JorgensenA varied group of alternative fuel and manual green vehicles wereon display at the Green Scene Fair at the Hacienda Business Parkin Pleasanton last week. Exhibitors provided demonstrations andinformation on such things as green building materials, landscapedesign, solar power and energy efficient products. Pictured lookingat a bicycle that folds up is Jeniece Avalos of Pleasanton.four through eight. Transitionalkindergarten is for students bornbetween Nov. 2, 2007 and Dec.2, 2007, a requirement enactedby Senate Bill 1381, the KindergartenReadiness Act.Signed into law last fall, the billpushes up the date when childrenmust turn five to enter kindergartenfrom Dec. 2 to Sept. 1. Thechange will be phased in onemonth at a time over three yearsstarting in the fall of 2012.The school also will have enrichmentspecialists in art, music,physical education, science, and(See CHARTER, page 4)Pleasanton Schools HopeTo Fund Nursing StaffPleasanton school trusteeshope to be able to retain thetwo full-time equivalent schoolnursing positions that came tothem at the beginning of the lastfiscal year.Trustees heard a report aboutnurse staffing, and a related item,the district’s child nutritional servicesat their meeting Sept. 27.The two nursing positionsjoined an existing one in in2009 to cut the district’s nurseto-studentratio from 15,000:1to 5000:1. That’s still far greaterthan the guidelines from nationalhealth authorities, which say agood ratio is 750:1.The district’s average is higherthan the state’s average in comparableschool districts, which is2300:1, senior director of pupilservices Kevin Johnson told theboard at its meeting Sept. 27.Through the efforts of trusteesJamie Hintzke and Chris Grant,and former trustee Pat Kernan,the district was able to obtain atwo-year grant from ValleyCareHealth System to pay for the ad-dition of the two nurses.That grant will expire at theend of this fiscal year. Grant saidat the meeting that the districtand ValleyCare haven’t had aconversation yet about whetherthe grant might be extended.ValleyCare awarded the districtthe grant in view of the toughbudget crisis the district has beenfacing because of a shortage ofstate funding.Grant told the Independent,“We were hoping then that thebudget would improve (aftertwo years), but that hasn’t happened.Together, the health carecommunity, ValleyCare and theschool district can evaluate howwe can best weather an expandedpoor situation at the state level,and maintain the quality nursingsupport that we have in ourdistrict.”Hintzke added that a goodlevel of nursing staffing needs tocontinue. “We need to figure out away to carve it out of our generalfund,” she said.(See NURSING, page 4)Coalition Pushing for Ag Land Protection in Rural Solar PolicyAfter hearing from the SolarCoalition about a proposed ruralsolar energy ordinance, anAlameda County Supervisors’committee asked staff to conductmore research, and bring an 11thhour updated policy draft backnext month. The coalition consistsof a newly organized groupof stakeholders.The decision was made Oct. 3Zone 7 Reviews Reserve Policy:Pleasanton Asks No Rate IncreaseAt a study session, Zone 7Water Agency directors took acloser look at their reserve policies,but did not act.The one-hour meeting onOct. 5 was intended to clarifyfor all directors the past policiesconcerning financial reserves,and show the status of currentreserves.Reserves have been an issuewith the agency’s four waterretailing customers: Livermore,Pleasanton, DSRSD, and CaliforniaWater Service.The retailers would like tosee Zone 7 approve no water rateincrease next year.Pleasanton reaffirmed thatdesire in a resolution it passedOct. 4, and sent to Zone 7 on theday of the meeting Oct. 5.The city council voted 3-0 to(See ZONE 7, page 4)by the Supervisors Transportationand Land Use Planning Committee,which screens issues beforethey go to the full board.The panel involves SupervisorsScott Haggerty, whosedistrict includes Livermore,and Nate Miley, who representsPleasanton and Castro Valley.A staff report with recommendationson what to have in the solarpolicy needs to be researchedfurther, said the supervisors.Haggerty was concerned thatthe committee did not receive thereport from staff until the meetingbegan. He wanted more timeto look it over.Haggerty also recognized thatstakeholders were at the samedisadvantage.Dick Schneider, who was aco-author of Alameda CountyMeasure D and is examining thepolicy draft for compatabilitywith the measure, said that hedidn’t see how there could be afull and fair discussion of the issueswithout receiving the reportin a timely way to give feedbackconcerning staff recommendations.A draft version of the reporthas been available, but not thefinal version.Schneider and others haveformed the Solar Coalition of fiveorganizations. The coalition saidthat it has many questions aboutthe policy, and suggestions aboutwhat it needs to cover.The organizations are theFriends of Livermore, Friends(See SOLAR, page 4)SupervisorsUpdateWilliamsonAct PolicyAlameda County Supervisorspassed revisions to the county’sWilliamson Act policy. The revisionsensure that it conformsto changes made over the yearsin the state’s administration ofthe law.The board acted on a 3-0vote at its meeting Oct. 11, withNadia Lockyer and Keith Carsonabsent.The Williamson Act allowsassessors to value agriculturalland at its agricultural value, notat the higher value of potentiallydeveloped land. The savings helpto enable landowners to remain inagriculture.The move to update the policybegan four years ago. Planners,the planning commission, theagricultural advisory committee,stakeholders and the publicplayed a role in designing thechanges.One change may help morelandowners take advantage ofthe Williamson Act. Instead ofrequiring a minimum numberof acres to qualify, a landownerinstead could show a gross valueof the land’s agricultural produc-(See UPDATE, page 2)PET OF THE WEEKMeet Roxy. Roxy is a 10 month old Dachshund &Rottweiler blend. Not only is she as cute as can be,but she is playful and loving. Roxy enjoys running aftertennis balls and snuggling with her person. To learnmore about our adoptable animals, call 925-426-8656or visit the website www.valleyhumane.org. ValleyHumane Society is located at 3670 Nevada Street inPleasanton. Hours are Tues.- Sat. 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.Photo courtesy of Aaron Czeszynski

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